I was loading groceries into my car the other day, when I noticed an elderly woman sitting in the front passenger seat of a nearby car. She was alone, the car wasn’t running, the windows were rolled up, and she seemed so lost and sad. I almost went over, tapped on her window, and asked if she wanted to pass the time with a little bingo. After I got home, I decided to sit down and write a list of things I wish people wouldn’t do when I’m retired, and enjoying my golden years.
1. Please don’t leave me in the car when you’re at the store. I know its only for a little while, but come on! Dogs don’t like it. Why do you think they bark? At least roll the window down a little, put on some Frank Sinatra music, and put a sign on the window saying,
“Do not disturb. Elderly Gentleman is not dead; he’s just taking a nap.”
2. Please don’t tell me what to eat. I’m ninety-five for Heaven’s sake! Do you really think one more double whopper with cheese is going to do any more damage to my arteries. I made it this far, and I don’t intend to go to my maker drinking a spinach and oatmeal shake.
P.S. If I seem a little grumpy, slip me a chocolate bar. We’ll both be a lot happier.
3. Don’t buy me clothes. If you have to, then buy simple ones in plain colors like gray, blue and black. Loose fitting Dockers, and over-sized knit polo’s in solid colors are great. Remember, I’m a little forgetful, my eyesight’s not so good, and even in my prime I wasn’t a fashion guru. I don’t want to wander around with green golf pants, a garish orange Hawaiian shirt, and a blue hat that says “Grandpa Rocks.” Oh yeah. Don’t buy me bright white sneakers. Not only do they look crazy, but I can’t tie them myself.
4. If you see me doing yard work without a shirt or lying on my deck soaking up the sun; don’t rush over, and slather me with suntan lotion, or lecture me on the dangers of melanoma. I already look like a giant raison, and more importantly; I’m finally warm.
5. I know you care, but please don’t keep telling me not to forget things. Let me tell you a little secret. I only forget what I want to forget. I always remember to take my medication, and the date of my wedding anniversary.
6. No, I’m not dead. Don’t shake me and say, “Dad wake up,” or lean close to see if I’m still breathing. I’m just taking a nap. I love naps as much as I like Hersey chocolate bars. If I could nap, and eat chocolate at the same time, I would.